National Restaurant Association Releases 2020 State of the Restaurant Industry Report
February 27, 2020 at 08:49 AM EST
Industry Sales Projected to Reach $899 Billion in 2020
Washington, DC (RestaurantNews.com) Today, the National Restaurant Association released its 2020 State of the Restaurant Industry Report which examines key factors impacting the restaurant industry including the current state of the economy, operations, workforce, and food and menu trends across segments from quickservice to fine dining. The report is an authoritative look at the industry and its challenges and opportunities based on a range of national surveys of restaurant owners, operators, chefs and consumers.
Key findings regarding economic conditions include:
“Now in its eleventh consecutive year of growth, the restaurant industry is adapting to consumer preferences faster than ever before,” said Hudson Riehle, senior vice president, research and knowledge group, National Restaurant Association. “Consumers tell us they want to use restaurants more than they are now, and the challenge for the industry is meeting consumers where they want to be. We expect this year will see growth in off-premises options, technology that streamlines operations, and more restaurants that are talking about their increased sustainable and eco-friendly practices.”
Opportunity lies in off-premises
Off-premises will be a prominent force of growth in 2020. To be successful, restaurant operators will look to strike the perfect formula of on- and off-premises for their business as consumers strive for convenience, but continue to look to the social escape that restaurants provide. When asked about ways in which restaurants could incorporate more technology, consumers primarily mention frictionless, convenience- and service-enhancing items, rather than people-eliminating items. Other key takeaways on operations include:
Employment opportunities abound
The restaurant industry remains one of the economy’s most important employers – for a year or for a career. Sixty-three percent of adults report working in the restaurant industry at some point during their lives; 48 percent held their first regular job in a restaurant. Employee recruitment and retention continues to be a major challenge for operators in 2020, with low unemployment rates and growing job openings. However, of the job openings filled in 2019, nearly half of them were filled by either new entrants to the workforce or people promoted from other positions in the same restaurant. Other key statistics on the state of the workforce include:
Healthy, sustainable options increase alongside changing alcohol preferences
Consumer interest in healthy menu options will remain strong in 2020, and consumers will make decisions based on the availability of healthy offerings. Alcohol is a key driver of sales in the fine dining segment, with nearly two-thirds of orders including alcoholic beverages. In 2020, alcohol will expand further beyond this segment with operators in all but one category planning to increase their alcoholic beverage offerings to keep up with changing consumer tastes and preferences. Key figures on food and beverage trends include:
“Consumers are embracing the industry more as they continue to shift their spending away from physical items and towards experiences. This opens channels of opportunity and growth in food, beverage, and technology. We’re excited to see how these trends and developments play out in 2020 and beyond,” said Riehle.
Go here for more information or to access the full report.
About the National Restaurant Association
Founded in 1919, the National Restaurant Association is the leading business association for the restaurant industry, which comprises more than 1 million restaurant and foodservice outlets and a workforce of 15.6 million employees. We represent the industry in Washington, D.C., and advocate on its behalf. We operate the industry’s largest trade show (National Restaurant Association Show May 16-19, 2020, in Chicago); leading food safety training and certification program (ServSafe); unique career-building high school program (the NRAEF’s ProStart). For more information, visit Restaurant.org and find us on Twitter @WeRRestaurants, Facebook and YouTube.